from an RCA press release
Designed to complement the surging popularity of high-definition TV displays and concurrent with the release of new HD DVD movie titles, Thomson today unveiled its first HD DVD player, the RCA HDV5000 (suggested retail price $499), which combines the superior image and sound quality of high-definition images and multichannel surround sound with the convenience of DVD disc playback.
"The RCA HDV5000 offers consumers new options in home entertainment while retaining the convenience and ease of use that has made DVD players one of the most popular products in consumer electronics history," said Dan Collishaw, Chief Operating Officer for Thomsons Audio/Video and Accessories businesses. "This inaugural HD DVD product promises to deliver pre-recorded entertainment to the home in a dimension never before seen – true high-definition favorites that will further enhance a high-end home theater system. And it comes at a truly affordable price for consumers."
Officially endorsed by the DVD Forum industry organization as the next high-capacity DVD disc, the HD DVD format featured in the HDV5000 delivers sharper, more detailed picture performance than standard DVD discs. Moreover, the HD DVD format opens new avenues of interactivity including enhanced on-screen menus, scene searching, directors commentaries and the potential for online shopping. For consumers with large libraries of digital disc content, the RCA HDV5000 player provides backward compatibility with current DVD discs as well as audio CDs that have been available for over 20 years.
The HDV5000 supports various video formats including MPEG2, MPEG4/AVC and VC1. The unit plays back DVD/DVD-R/-RW/DVD-RAM discs and mp3 audio files from CD-R/CD-RW discs.
As movie studios prepare for the release of new titles in the high-definition HD DVD disc format, the retail introduction of the RCA HDV5000 offers consumers an array of convenience features that enhance the movie experience. These include the ability to search the on-screen menu, make changes to set-up options or access other menu functions while the movie is playing. Scene searching is facilitated with thumbnail images on the TV screen that allow you to use the cursor to go directly to a specific scene. The viewer can even access bonus material like directors comments while the movie is playing without going back to the discs menu.
A key convenience is the capability to connect the recorder to the consumers home network using the HDV5000s Ethernet port that enables upgrading of the player as new features are developed. Some of the units additional features include multiple audio and video stream decoding with separate volume control and 5.1 channel surround sound capability.
The RCA HDV5000 provides high-definition up-conversion of standard DVD discs and includes an HDMI 1.1 output for digital audio and video in one convenient connection. The HDV5000 will output copy-protected HD content through the HDMI interface in either 720p or 1080i and standard definition DVD discs can be upconverted to 720p or 1080i to complement the performance of a high-definition television. Since the conversion occurs in the player, the signal is free of excessive digital-to-analog conversion artifacts.
While improved picture performance is an outstanding advantage of the RCA HDV5000, audio quality is equally impressive, featuring Dolby Digital Plus technology for a more realistic listening experience. The player features built-in multichannel decoders for Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD (2 channel), DTS and DTS-HD (5.1 channel). The HDV5000 delivers digital information to a Surround Sound processor/receiver through S/PDIF or HDMI outputs.